Oceanfront Property in Arizona: Road Trip to Miami
Odometer (Legend): 543,818
Odometer (Vigor): 105,755
Trip Distance: 164 Miles
I’m really giving you all quite the summer 2016 vacation! It seems only fitting that this weekend’s destination is as much of a vacation spot as last week’s (“Florence“). Miami, Florida would have been a stretch for a weekend drive – some 2,363 miles from home – not quite close enough for a day-trip. But Miami, Arizona is. And it’s been about 5 years since I last talked about that little spot on the map, in October 2011. So let’s go back and take a look around.
Like most of the towns in Arizona’s wild western frontier, Miami got its start in the mining industry in the 1870s. The hills of the surrounding area were rich with copper, and prospectors flocked to be a part of the industry in those early years. Miami proper was founded in 1907 and tracts of land were officially sold for development after the first train arrived there in 1909. Within a year, there were about 1,300 people calling it home. Interestingly enough, 100 years later, that population had only grown by about 500 people.
Today, Miami is a quiet (and even run-down) little community that while only 77 miles from the hustle and bustle of urban Scottsdale, feels like stepping back in time a century or so. My friend Rob decided to join me for the drive. It took us only about 90 minutes to get to Miami from my home – straight east on US Highway 60 and through a pass in the Superstition Mountains in my ILX. Along the way we stopped in a similarly time-warped community called Superior.
Most of Miami is pretty run-down. The residential side-streets – many of which are so skinny they’re one-way – have poor pavement conditions and steep grades. The small homes are sad, with crumbling foundations and stair steps. Most have chain link fences around their yards and “NO TRESPASSING” signs in abundance. One particular such sign was kind of entertaining. “Do I have to speak to you in 12 gauge?” with the image of a gun. Real friendly neighborhood over there!
A friend had recommended some Mexican grub so we made our way down to Guayo’s El Rey restaurant. We happened to time our arrival right when church let out, apparently. The place flooded with hungry (but well-dressed) lunch-goers as soon as we’d been seated. “Anything to drink?” asked the waittress. “Sure, a Diet Coke,” I said. Before she even turned to Rob to ask for his beverage order, she’d walked away. She brought back a pitcher of Diet Coke for both of us. I guess she figured we both wanted the same thing! At least the food was delicious.
Miami’s Sullivan Street is the main thoroughfare – or was, at least, until the current US Highway 60 was put in a block to the south. The owner of one antique store that Rob and I visited told us that Miami was once home to 30 brothels during its boom. I enjoyed walking through a few of the historic shops. I was surprised to come around the corner in one of them and see the front end of a 1950 Buick in there: The exact same car that my Grandpa Hugie owned in 1954. I’ve blogged about it here.
Unfortunately, that Buick (or piece of it, anyway) wasn’t for sale but I left my contact information with the store owner in case they ever decide to part with it. Rob and I cruised back to civilization after enjoying a few minutes on Memory Lane. Thanks for being a part of the adventure!
We got a kick out of how the road stripes lead right up to the front door of the Pinal County Administration Building in Superior
Sullivan Street, Miami
These railroad tracks just end!
I read this as “Slow Children At Play.”
Overlooking Miami from someone’s driveway
Don’t try and eat at Guayo’s El Rey on a Wednesday!
This is the combo #1. Shredded beef taco, enchilada, and a refried bean tostada. Are my food connoisseurs in the blog audience happier with this than they were with my buffalo chicken bites last week?
ILX parked on Sullivan
Making friends with a “fry guy” statue
Rob checking out the wares inside the antique shop
The soda fountain isn’t open yet
Headed back toward Phoenix via US 60
Queen Creek Tunnel (1952)
What did you think of my new T-shirt?
Couple other news bits! You all remember that 1993 L sedan I had for about a year? It’s been in Florida for a few weeks now and it’s getting a full restoration, courtesy of my friend Alan. Follow his “Build Thread” here!
Alan at work!
My brother Bentley sent me a progress picture yestererday showing the new leather he’s installing in my NSX.
Thanks to my friend Erik for sending me this awesome calendar featuring European Domestic Market Hondas!
Finally, a few have asked for a more thorough recent video of the Legend. I pulled it out on Saturday for a cruise and filmed 11 minutes’ worth of action for you. I’m going to leave this “Unlisted” instead of public since I realize that it makes it look like I ran a stop sign at 6:30. In the words of the movie Clueless, “I totally paused!”
Have a great week!